Vegetarian Cooking

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1st October marks the start of International Vegetarian Week. People around the world celebrate vegetables! If you haven’t made vegetarian food before, why not experiment with these simple recipes using everyday ingredients.

Mushroom and Courgette Lasagne

Almost better than the original, guaranteed to be popular with all the family. Serves 6.

You will need:

  • 2 onions
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 400g tin tomatoes
  • 250g mushrooms
  • 2 courgettes
  • a handful of basil leaves (optional)
  • 200g cheddar cheese or other hard cheese
  • 40g butter
  • 50g plain flour
  • 175 ml milk
  • 12 sheets dried lasagne

What to do:

  • Preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4.
  • Thinly slice the mushrooms and courgettes.
  • Finely chop the onions, and cook gently in olive oil til soft.
  • Add the tomatoes and cook for 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Add the mushrooms and courgettes and cook for a further 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the basil and leave aside to cool.
  • Grate the cheese.
  • Make a white sauce by melting the butter, stirring in the flour then adding the milk. Cook over a low heat, stirring frequently, until thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Put a thin layer of the vegetable sauce into a baking tray or lasagne dish, then a layer of lasagne sheets. Then continue with alternate layers of tomato sauce and courgette until it is used up.
  • Pour the white sauce over the top and sprinkle thickly with the grated cheese. (Leave out the white sauce and cheese to make this dish vegan).
  • Cook 30-40 minutes til the pasta is cooked and the top is browned.
  • Serve piping hot, with a green salad.

 

Shepherds Pie

Swap meat for lentils in this delicious take on a classic.

You will need:

  • 2 onions
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 sticks celery
  • 400g tin tomatoes
  • 300g dried lentils
  • 300ml stock
  • 1 glass red wine (optional)
  • 3 tbsps tomato puree
  • 1.5 kilos potatoes
  • 50g butter
  • 100g grated cheese

What to do:

 

  • Finely chop the onions and fry gently in the olive oil.
  • Chop the carrots and celery finely, add to onions. Cook 5-10 minutes til soft.
  • Add the tomatoes, lentils, stock, and red wine if using.
  • Simmer 30-40 minutes til lentils are soft, adding more water if necessary.
  • Add the tomato puree and stir well.
  • Meanwhile boil the potatoes and mash when soft with the butter. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Put the lentils into a shallow dish and top with the mashed potato.
  • Scatter with grated cheese and cook for 20 minutes or until the top is golden.

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